To Template or Not to Template, That is the Question

sharepoint-site-templatesIt’s a common strategy for companies to add a whole bunch of random elements to a default SharePoint team site, then give it to a department and tell them to use it – and make every single departmental site the same.  This approach very seldom works though.

Think about it if the situation was reversed.  If you had no idea what SharePoint even was, let alone what to use it for; and someone gave you a site and said just use it, would you? Of course not.  There’s no motivation whatsoever to do so.  It’s a bunch of generic items that mean nothing to the uninitiated.

There are no shortcuts to a well designed intranet because every single department and every single company is different.  You need to do the legwork, meaning you need to extract sensible information from the people in that department.  You need to understand how a piece of paper is created and flows around the office.  Most of the time, the information is in people’s heads, compounding the challenge of trying to get that information and translating it into a better system on SharePoint.

We say ditch the templates and make a site that is customised to what those people are actually working on.  You can’t paint everyone with the same brush.

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